Select Cover Image to See Fullsize Version
Fantastic Four (1961) #8
1st appearance of Puppet Master. 1st appearance of Alicia Masters. "Prisoners of the Puppet Master!" is written by Stan Lee and drawn by Jack Kirby. A small man with ugly ambitions discovers the means to exert control over the people he sees as repressing him. Using radioactive clay, the Puppet Master forms remarkable marionettes who give him power of the subjects they resemble. Aided by his beautiful, unsuspecting and blind daughter, Alicia, the villain first tests his power on a total stranger whom he commands to jump off a bridge. His attempted murder is thwarted by the Human Torch and the Puppet Master realizes that the Fantastic Four stand in his path to power. In retaliation, he creates a puppet of the Thing and summons him to his apartment.
Sue Storm sees the Thing walk off in a daze and follows invisibly to the Puppet Master's lair. But unwittingly Alicia gives away Sue's position and the villain knocks her out by flooding the room with gas. Dressing Alicia as the Invisible Girl, the Puppet Master sends her back to the Fantastic Four's headquarters with the still enthralled Thing. As Ben Grimm acts out the Puppet Master's orders and attacks Mr. Fantastic and the Torch, the sinister sculptor attempts to orchestrate a prison escape. But a formula created by Reed Richards temporarily turns the Thing back into Ben Grimm and the reunited FF move quickly to thwart the Puppet Master's jailbreak plans. And best of all, a love is born between Alicia and the ever-lovin' Thing.